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Police officer who shot Alton Sterling fired from Baton Rouge Police Department

Police officer who shot Alton Sterling fired from Baton Rouge Police Department”

Officer Blane Salamoni, who shot Alton Sterling, has been fired from the police department, Baton Rouge Police Chief Murphy Paul announced Friday.

In May, federal prosecutors found there wasn't enough evidence to warrant civil rights charges against Salamoni and Lake.

Previously released cell phone video showed Sterling, 37, pinned to the ground by the officers before he was shot.

The lawsuit, which comprises 26 pages, claims that Officers Blane Salamoni and Howie Lake breached protocol and used excessive force when they shot Sterling while responding to reports at a convenience store that a resident had been threatened by a Black man who was selling CDs. Ms. Broome, who was elected in 2016, pledged during her campaign that she would replace the police chief, fulfilling that promise late a year ago with the announcement of Mr. Paul's appointment.

Tuesday, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced that the state would not bring charges against officers Blaine Salamoni and Howie Lake II.

Alton Sterling, who was shot dead by police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. on July 5, 2016, is seen in an undated photo posted on his Facebook account. Both officers have been on paid leave since the July 2016 shooting.

In June 2017, Baton Rouge Mayor Sharon Weston Broome called on Paul's predecessor, Carl Dabadie Jr., to fire Salamoni. Salamoni arrives to assist Lake and Sterling continues to resist arrest. In video of the altercation, the two officers can be seen pinning Sterling, and at one point, once can be heard yelling, "he's got a gun".

Lawyers for the two officers are nearly certain in the appeals process to seize on the mayor's statements calling for the discipline of the officers, and argue that the punishments were a foregone conclusion, said Henry D.H. Olinde, a Baton Rouge lawyer with significant experience with civil service cases.

According to the state report released this week, Sterling refused to heed the officers' commands to put his hands on the hood of a auto, and each officer reached for and tried to control Sterling's arms. The footage from Salamoni's body camera, sources with direct knowledge of the investigation said, show Salamoni at this point training his gun at Sterling's head.

He immediately draws his weapon and threatens to shoot Sterling in the head if he doesn't turn around and place his hands on the hood of a vehicle. At the time of the shooting, Baton Rouge did not have a written policy on the use of force and de-escalation.

Eventually all three men ended up struggling on the ground.

"Don't f--g move or I'll shot your f--g a-. b--h", Salamoni can be heard shouting as Sterling tells the officers they're hurting him. On the advice of his attorney, Salamoni chose not to answer questions, Paul said.

Lake then stood positioned over Sterling pointing his handgun.

As the officers awaited word on their future, Salamoni's attorney said he thought department leaders made a decision to fire his client months ago. Sterling rolled away from Salamoni, tried to get up and then Salamoni fires more shots into his back, killing him. "Sterling was under the influence, and that contributed to his noncompliance", Landry said.

Sterling family attorney Chris Stewart said this week that every action was "initiated by the officers".



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